Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Just Shut Up and Be a Good...

Now, you can fill in the dots yourself.

Be a good woman, be a good black, be a good gay, be a good, grateful (and always in my debt for hiring you) housekeeper/lawn worker... in the workplace, sometimes it's be a good team player. So long as you shut up and take it, ignore it, be oblivious to it... even when you're getting peed on and someone tells you it's raining.

You've probably experienced the glare or biting words of someone who just wants you to shut up and take it, no matter what.

They probably read something like the book pictured here, How To Suppress Women's Writing. Or they checked out a website entry like this one, How To Suppress Discussions of Racism.

You got any examples of "Just shut up and be a good..."?

Here's a recent one... the folks attacking Jasmyne Cannick this week for pointing out racism in the gay/lesbian community in her recent columns. She's published some of the attack emails on her site this week. It's pretty eye-opening how far people will go to maintain their place of privilege and comfort... even when faced with how their actions make others feel.

Now, if only society could approach life with a belief that racism, sexism, homophobia, classism, etc... still exist... then we could all move ahead with finding systemic and personal answers to right those historical wrongs. But when there's denial... there will never be any social change.

And people who speak out will be told... Just Shut Up and Be a Good... when they really shouldn't have to shut up at all.

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